Friendships Scared Away?

I don’t have a lot of “real-life” friends.

Before I go on, let me preface this post with the fact that I’m making an observation, and not issuing a self-deprecating, self-loathing, personal rant focused on attacking my own self-esteem. God know I make a habit of this far too often, but it’s simply something I’m observing.

But yes, I do not have many “real-life” friends and I am noticing that I have lost contact or lost touch with many online friends, as well.  It’s something I have grown to accept as a reality of my life and a reality of the ways I have handled my own mental health.  And tonight, I noticed something that had me wondering how much of my behavior has impacted my friendships over the years. Granted, some things I think are probably normal – like losing touch with someone because of distance and time.  But others, I can’t help but assume my negativity and outlook on life has driven some away. Sometimes, I know that my behaviors have directly caused me to lose contact with people – it’s an inevitability when you continue to remove your blogs and remove yourself away from people.  It’s self-defeating and I am well aware of it.

But, as I look at my real-life friendships, I can see how much I have withdrawn from people in life. I don’t like that I’ve done this. I don’t like that I have intentionally avoided social situations because of my own self-perceived embarrassment of my life. I don’t like that I have assumed people would not like me or would be driven away by the things I have not liked about myself – it’s like assuming they are incapable of accepting me the way I am.  I have not given people the benefit of the doubt that they can choose for themselves if they like me or not; I made the decision for them in a lot of ways. I removed myself…subtly, over time. A lot of people probably don’t even realize it. I’ve done this with family members too.

I look at my friendships online and I can see myself do the same. How many blogs have I had and deleted? On some level, I look at what I write online and have a change of heart about my thoughts and feelings and become embarrassed by what I write and want to take a complete 180 degree turn from what I present. And, obviously, I assume people will no longer like me or that I don’t want to conflict my “real life” with my “online” life and I run away, scared. I take other people’s decision making ability to like me or not away from them and I assume that I am not likeable.

As I write this, I recall a conflict I had with a friend I had made on Twitter. One day, she got to see me at one of my worst moments – a complete self-deprecating, self-degrading, self-loathing and self-directed tirade of complete negativity. She saw me melt completely away with myself and, at the time, chose to remove me as a friend and contact. Her feeling was that my negativity was so overwhelming it was impacting her own emotions and feelings. Truthfully, she was right. I was toxic and the toxicity had no boundaries. And I went so far as to encourage her to not be associated with me.  Of course, I apologized and expressed that I was wrong – and I was – and because she is the type of person to see the good in people, she easily forgave me. And I made a promise to focus on positivity when I am speaking with her.

But being positive is not something I have been used to doing for quite some time. And tonight, as I contemplate the friendships I have had – both online and in “real” life, I can’t help but think my toxic-negativity has created the rifts I see, or the lack of friendships I experience. I don’t deny the reality of this aspect of my personality, and it is something I am actively working on improving, but it makes me sad in a way. Sad for the actions and behaviors I may have displayed.

It makes me feel sorrow that even seeing the results of my attitude, there was nothing I felt I could do to change it. It’s almost like I’m making an excuse, but it is more like the feelings I experience while it’s happening. I understand my actions are mine and I own them, but there is like an out of the body experience going on when these things occur and I feel like I’m looking upon it from outside, but I can’t get in to stop or hinder my negativity – it’s like a chain reaction that can’t stop once it begins.

But, I come back into myself, and can see the friendships I have chased away…

11 thoughts on “Friendships Scared Away?

  1. I totally identify with you on this. (Although it has been a looong time since I had any friends offline.)

    “I can’t help but assume my negativity and outlook on life has driven some away.”

    I think that all the time… and people tell me that “true friends wouldn’t be driven away”… but I am not so sure I believe that. I’m a lot to deal with sometimes.

    “I have intentionally avoided social situations because of my own self-perceived embarrassment of my life.”

    I do this. All the time.

    Oh… and I suck at acting positive. I rarely feel positive… so acting is truly acting. I’m sure I’d be easier to be around… but I kind of feel like I wouldn’t be me. Sad, I guess… but I think that’s the truth.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. In terms of being embarrassed of what you write, I know exactly what you mean. I don’t know if it would work, but I have a mantra that I use, even when I can’t even finish rereading what I’ve written because it sounds so stupid: “All I ask is the truth. Even if it’s not the truth now, it was the truth when I wrote it, and that gives it value.” Usually also I try to breathe a little bit, and relax. And I do let myself write add-ons from the future at the end, like “I don’t know what I was thinking when I wrote this, but here it is I guess. It sounds so stupid reading it now.” I know it’s not exactly the healthiest of things, but for me at least it’s better than deleting it.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Hey! I can completely relate to this.
    Sometimes I too have very shifting opinions I personally feel that happens when
    you write something and its just subliminally influenced by what you are going through at that point in your life. Perhaps that’s why people tend to second guess themselves.

    Like

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